ImPeTuous tax rise?

Steve Herbert suspects that yet another increase to Insurance Premium Tax (IPT) could be an own-goal for the UK Budgets (and Autumn Statements) must be amongst the most stressful and challenging times for any Chancellor of the Exchequer.  Even more so when the presiding government is in the early stages of negotiation to decide the […]

2 December 2016 by Steve Herbert

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Pensions – sounding the retreat?

Last week the government announced a major U-turn in pension policy.  George Osborne’s much heralded March 2015 announcement to allow pensioners to sell their annuities in exchange for a lump sum was cancelled just a few months before it was due to go live.  The government’s statement on this issue can be read here. Yet […]

25 October 2016 by Steve Herbert

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Pensions Advice: A casualty no more?

You probably don’t need me to tell you that UK pension savings have been undergoing a rather radical set of alterations in recent years.  The last decade has seen changes large and small, with the most significant including pensions “simplification”, auto-enrolment, charge caps, commission bans, and – most recently – the introduction of Pension Freedoms. […]

9 October 2016 by Steve Herbert

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From Arkwright’s to Amazon

Napoleon Bonaparte once derisively described Britain as a “nation of shopkeepers”. It was and is a rather lame insult, but like many such comments contains more than a grain of truth.  For despite our tiny geographical presence the UK remains one of the largest economies in the world. So shopkeepers and business people we Brits […]

28 September 2016 by Steve Herbert

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Brexit and the phoney war

In September 1939 the UK declared war on Germany.  Immediately after this announcement the air-raid sirens were sounded causing widespread panic in London.  Yet for most Brits the horrors of war were not to become apparent for another 8 months.  This period of unexpected calm became known in the history books as the “phoney war”. […]

1 September 2016 by Steve Herbert

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Pension Freedoms: The long and the short of it…

Last week’s pensions press release by HM Treasury/ HMRC struck a rather triumphalist note even within its title – “Britain’s pension revolution goes from strength to strength” The release went on to proudly state that since April this year “159,000 people have accessed £1.7 billion flexibly from their pension pots”. Impressive numbers I agree, and […]

2 August 2016 by Steve Herbert

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Post Brexit, productivity is key for Britain and employers can help

In January – shortly before the date of the EU referendum was announced – I wrote this article for Mindful Money in which I questioned how UK business would fare in the event of a Brexit decision.  My concern centred on the productivity and engagement deficit of Great Britain when compared to most other members […]

25 July 2016 by Steve Herbert

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LISA and the British obsession with home ownership

Earlier this week the Work and Pensions Select Committee voiced a concern that has been bothering some commentators within the pensions industry. The Committee warned that a new savings plan – announced in the March Budget statement and this week confirmed in the Queen’s Speech – the Lifetime ISA (LISA) could; “distract from [pensions] Auto […]

20 May 2016 by Steve Herbert

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The pensions tax relief roller coaster

March 2016 was a roller coaster month for the world of UK pensions. At the start of the month the industry, employers, and savers were braced for predicted alterations to the current system of tax reliefs.  Such changes were shelved only a matter of days later (seemingly in response to the EU referendum), but a […]

25 April 2016 by Steve Herbert

Retirement Planning

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There’s something about LISA

22 March 2016 by Steve Herbert

Expert Opinion

So despite all the pre-Budget spin and counter-intelligence George Osborne chose to make a major pensions policy announcement anyway.  Only the mean-spirited would deny that it was a cunning political move to side-step the major taxation decisions on pensions by effectively leaving them untouched.  Instead the Chancellor introduced a competitor to pension plans in the […]

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